Before you're allowed to process a SEPA direct debit transaction, you need to have permission from the bank account holder. Look at it as an agreement, a statement from the account holder that you can charge their bank account. This is called a mandate. There are clear requirements for a mandate. For example, there are certain things that you are required to report and there are requirements about how you can obtain this permission.
What information are you required to report on the mandate:
- The Creditor ID
- A mandate reference/code
- IBAN from which you want to charge (account holder can specify this)
- Name of bank account holder (account holder can specify this)
All four of the above elements are arranged by eCurring.
There are two ways of getting a valid mandate:
- A 'paper' mandate. This is signed by pen.
- A 'digital' mandate (through Digital Debit Authorization)
At this moment, many ways are used to request mandates, but only the above two are valid ways of getting it. A direct debit transaction will however always be accepted because the banks don't check beforehand if a mandate was issued in a valid way. When there is a disagreement about the charge, the account holder's bank could ask for the mandate. If this was not obtained by either of the above two ways, then the mandate is invalid and the transaction should be refunded.
A mandate is valid for 36 months after the last direct debit charge. We advise you to keep this mandate for at least 13 months so you can prove you've obtained the mandate in a rightful way.
Please note: eCurring currently only supports the Digital Mandate Authorization. Did you receive a paper mandate? In that case you can manually assign a subscription and fill out the mandate code there.